This is the story I promised a few posts ago, the Classic Ferret Orchid Story.
(if you’re getting tired of Ferrets, they’re the mascot of our close group of four friends from U of D days, and a few honorary Ferrets; we have a lot of shared history so the references will, unfortunately if you’re already annoyed, keep popping up)
So. two of the “ferrets” were engaged, and she and I were living in the Ferret Flat. The top floor of this 200-year old mansion, mowing the lawn (see John Deere in Massada) and vaccuuming the house and doing some “general monthly laundry” (I’m practising euphemisms). I’ll call her Mango ferret (the bride to be). Her school threw her an amazing number of bridal showers (2) and at one of them, someone gave her a BEAUTIFUL Orchid. I say Orchid with a big O because while we were living together, Mangoferret and I developed some mutual obsessions–overexcitements–about green tea ice cream, donuts, orchids, hating polishing silverware, role playing, Monday Night Therapy etc. So this Orchid was amazing. Truly beautiful, with delicate yellow flowers, spotted with brown, and shiny leaves. Beth brought it home very carefully, and placed it on our kitchen table and we oohed and ahhhed from afar, just sitting there and looking at it, very afraid to touch it, so we squeezed it’s stem. “Very sturdy” we both said to each other.
The Orchid came in this classy designer vase where you could see the roots through the glass. Mangoferret watered it very carefully after having found out from someone who also owned one, how much water they need and which light they need etc. After a couple of weeks, the roots and the earth grew MOULDY very rapidly and started smelling. We panicked and called my horticulturist friend, inviting him over for dinner that night, we were having Pasta Alfredo and a movie, I think it was Training Day. After dinner we crossed our arms and leaned over and said “So. Can we borrow your consulting services? We have an Orchid problem.” He graciously acquiesed and we brought the sick Orchid over to the kitchen table, setting it dead center. We explained to him that after a week or two (can’t recall) of adequate watering, the roots suddenly moulded (is that a verb?) and we were worried about killing the beautiful plant.
The four of us (four including Dr. Plants) were all seated around the table, and as Dr. leaned in forward to examine the flower, so did we all, imperceptibly, but in unison. He cocked his head, looked at us, cocked his head the other way, leaned in forward and then, BENT A LEAF UP AT A NINETY DEGREE ANGLE!?!?!! We were amazed at the quality of the leaves, until he said, hesitant..”Is this a joke?” At this point we all looked at each other and then all leaned in very close to the plant when someone said “That’s a drop of glue on the flowers” and then Dr. casually said in the background “you’ve been watering a fake plant for two weeks!” I think we all just about died laughing, and we actually all had to leave the kitchen and move to the living room in order to roll around laughing hysterically on the sofas and chairs which were MUCH more comfortable for a laughter of that magnitude.
That was a classic. Anyway. So Mangoferret recalled the beautiful memory on her Orchid series, she’s so cute. You’ll be happy to know that the Orchid is still alive and doing well in their new house, the Ferret Cottage. It has a place of honor on a beautiful woodbeam above their living room. :-)